Mayor Mike McGinn delivered the annual State of the City address Tuesday, focusing heavily on how neighborhood activism, policies and initiatives are helping create a socially just and environmentally sustainable Seattle.
While Capitol Hill was only specifically mentioned once in the address, many of the touted accomplishments and future aspirations from the mayor, who is up for re-election this year, were relevant to the Hill.
A round-up of reports from other city media is below as well as video of the speech.
In his annual State of the City address before the City Council, McGinn cited accomplishments in job growth, balanced budgets, expanded planning for light rail, safer bicycle routes and city support for education.
“Mayor Rahm Emanuel, when he announced bike routes in downtown Chicago, called out Seattle, saying he wanted our bikers and our tech jobs,” McGinn said to laughter. “We’re going to work to keep them here.”
McGinn has come a long way from his first speech in 2010, which was widely criticized for its disorganization, off-the-cuff feel and downbeat tone. Even McGinn supporters were let down: Here was a visionary mayor lost in the weeds of budget cutting, a bad economy and institutional resistance. The rookie, mistake-prone McGinn also had qualities that made some wonder if he wasn’t a kind of Dixy Lee Ray in the making. Dixy Lee being the smart, combative one-term Democratic governor who was her own worst enemy. A team player she was not, and it led to her downfall.
In all, it was the State of the City address you’d expect from McGinn, a man up for reelection in 2013 and attempting to turn the tide on a sea of negative perceptions regarding his first term in office. Speaking for roughly 45 minutes, the mayor burst through a lengthy list of accomplishments for the city – not just over the last year, but since he was elected in 2009 – ending on an optimistic admission: There’s still more work to be done.